AMS Coronavirus (COVID-19) Statement March 13, 2020
March 13, 12:30PM – At this time, the Public Health Agency of Canada has assessed the public health risk associated with the Coronavirus (COVID-19) as “low for Canada”. The AMS takes the situation very seriously and is doing our part to mitigate the spread of the disease.
We have been closely monitoring developments and will follow the lead of UBC and regional, provincial and federal health authorities. The health and safety of students, staff, and the UBC community is our top priority.
Provincial authorities have recommended the immediate cancellation or postponement all events with more than 250 people in attendance until further notice. In response, we have decided to cancel Block Party for this year as well as all club/constituencies events with more than 250 students attending. We will be sending out communications to clubs and constituencies in regards to handling their future events. External events with over 250 attendees will be cancelled to the end of March, 2020. Events booked beyond March, 2020 will be assessed at that time based on recommendations from provincial health authorities.
The AMS is taking all the appropriate cleaning and sanitizing measures in the Nest as possible, including:
- Increased cleaning and sanitizing throughout the building with an emphasis on high-use areas such as ATM machines, door handles, and eating tables.
- All AMS Outlets will sanitize the public contact areas every hour such as counters, POS machines, and cash terminals.
- Outlets are to increase the frequency that staff wash hands and/or change gloves.
- Installing hand-sanitizing stations in high-traffic public area of the Nest
Management is working with our unions, managers, and supervisors to develop an action plan to mitigate disruption to students and staff, including the possibility of closing the Nest. These plans will be updated as developments unfold.
The AMS is in close communications with UBC to ensure we are staying up-to-date with any developments from the University to address and prevent COVID-19. We will work to ensure that students are kept updated on any decisions that may occur.
To minimize your risk we urge everyone to follow the recommendations from the BC Centre for Disease Control:
- Anyone who is feeling unwell stay home regardless of the severity of the symptoms.
- Anyone who traveled to Hubei, China, Italy or Iran should stay home or self-isolate in their residence/room alone for 14 days, immediately on their return. They should monitor themselves daily for symptoms (fever, cough, muscle aches, difficulty breathing).
- As of March 12, 2020, anyone who traveled anywhere outside of Canada (including the United States) should stay home or self-isolate in their residence/room alone for 14 days, immediately on their return. They should monitor themselves daily for symptoms (fever, cough, muscle aches, difficulty breathing).
- Anyone who has been laboratory tested for COVID-19 should stay home or self-isolate in their residence/room alone, until their test results are known.
- Anyone who has been in close contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 by laboratory testing should stay home or self-isolate in their residence/room alone for 14 days after their last encounter. Individuals should monitor themselves daily for symptoms (fever, cough, muscle aches, difficulty breathing).
Other ways you can reduce risk:
- Frequently wash your hands with soap and water for 20-30 seconds
- Use a 60-90% alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water is not available
- Disinfect your cell phone regularly
- Cough or sneeze inside your elbow
- Avoid unnecessary contact such as hand-shakes and hugs
- Don’t share food, cups, bowls, plates or cutlery
- Wash your water bottle and travel mug regularly
- UBC COVID-19 updates – https://www.ubc.ca/campus-notifications/
- Vancouver Coastal Health – http://www.vch.ca/about-us/news/vancouver-coastal-health-statement-on-coronavirus
- Public Health Agency of Canada – https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection.html
- BC Centre for Disease Control – http://www.bccdc.ca/about/news-stories/stories/2020/information-on-novel-coronavirus
- Government travel advisories related to COVID-19 – https://www.canada.ca/en/public-health/services/diseases/2019-novel-coronavirus-infection/latest-travel-health-advice.html
- World Health Organization – https://www.who.int/emergencies/diseases/novel-coronavirus-2019
Again, we are continuing to monitor the situation closely and will provide ongoing updates as needed.